Saturday, 6 August 2016

Hey, how you doin'?

The character Joey Tribbiani famously uttered that phrase in 'Friends' to chat up any available lady. I would be delighted to have the delectable Mr LeBlanc utter those words to me, but finding the answer would be a different matter.

When I was very unwell, I would have been reduced to responding with 'Hmmm...' or 'Hneh...' Any noise really, so that I didn't have to vocalise the sheer terror I felt as I battled to remain in control of my emotions. I was also unable to vocalise that I wasn't well, because as soon as I admitted that out aloud to another human being, I would be admitting it to myself, and I really wasn't ready to do that.

As I began to accept that I wasn't well, my response would change to 'Up and down', which does nothing to describe the rollercoaster of emotions I was riding. Later it would be 'Better than I was', which was a truer representation of how things were, but open to misinterpretation by people with no interest in my wellbeing.

Finding Moodscope allowed me to put a number to that feeling. I score mainly 65 now, with an overall average of 57, significantly better than the days when 11 was an achievement. If I go above those averages, I know that I am going to crash. Too low and I know that I've already crashed. These scores are a better judge and description of how I am feeling, than I am of myself. I can also use the 20 emotions to describe exactly what is going on. 'Ooohhh, that's a bit hostile'; 'I'm proud of that' etc. and then do something to reduce the negative and increase the positive.

Now, as I find myself in recovery and trying each day to maintain my wellness, my answers to Joey's question would be: 'Taking each day as it comes'; 'On the mend', and my favourite, via Douglas Adams: 'Mostly OK'. Sometimes I am not, sometimes I have a bad day, but that is the thing about recovery, you have to take the good with the bad.

So, if Joey asked you, how would you respond?

A Moodscope member

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